(Yicai Global) July 5 -- WeRide, a Chinese developer of autonomous driving technology, has been granted the United Arab Emirate's first national license for driverless vehicles, according to Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, UAE prime minister and ruler of Dubai.
Guangzhou-based WeRide will start road testing self-driving vehicles in the UAE, Sheikh Mohammed added in a statement yesterday.
In March, WeRide began operations in the China-UAE Industrial Capacity Cooperation Demonstration Zone, a Chinese state-owned industrial zone that aims to promote cooperation between the two countries. The firm has been testing its robotaxis on some UAE roads for more than a year.
According to local reports, Dubai aims to make 25 percent of its transportation autonomous by 2030. Granting the license reflects the UAE's reforms in the future mobility model, Sheikh Mohammed said.
WeRide is also set to join hands with Bayanat, a UAE artificial intelligence firm, to launch a robotaxi service in some areas of Abu Dhabi, the largest emirate in the Persian Gulf state.
Last September, WeRide partnered with Saudi Company for Artificial Intelligence, owned by the Saudi Public Investment Fund, to launch the first dynamic display route of WeRide Mini Robobus, a driverless bus, in Saudi Arabia.
Founded in 2017, WeRide has researched, developed, tested, and operated in more than 26 cities worldwide and has accumulated over 20 million kilometers of self-driving experience. Its products include taxis, buses, vans, sweepers, and other high-level autonomous driving vehicles.
Editor: Martin Kadiev